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England's Winter of Cricket 2020/21

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Post by Duty281 Wed 21 Oct 2020, 8:12 pm

First topic message reminder :

First winter tour for England confirmed today: three T20s and three ODIs in South Africa from the 27th November-9th December.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/cricket/54537709

A possible limited-overs tour of Pakistan, which would be England's first trip to that country since 2005, as well as visits to Sri Lanka and India may also go ahead in early 2021.

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Post by JDizzle Wed 03 Feb 2021, 7:58 pm

KP_fan wrote:To me following should be 8 certain picks for Eng

1.Anderson
or Broad
2.Archer ( why is 90mph capable Wood not even in the squad?)
3. Root
4. Butler
5 Stokes ( will he bowl)
6. Leach
7. Moeen
8. Woakes

Remaining  3 could be any 3 batters who I think will contribute little.

Eng's bulk of runs would have to come from Woakes, Stokes, Butler, Moeen
Even  Root would be marginalized I think.... because Indians would have figured how to curtail his sweep based runs

In answer to some of your questions KPF... Wood is being rested after the two Tests in Sri Lanka, both physically and mentally from the bubble. He will be back for T3 and T4.

It sounds as though Stokes will bowl. Which is crucial to England's balance as otherwise they would probably have to play another seamer otherwise.

You see Woakes as a definite? His 3 wickets at 80 in India beg to differ! And plus England don't need him if Stokes can bowl. As they have Anderson/Broad, Archer and Stokes.

I feel that if England are relying on their runs to come from the lower order then this will be 4-0 (to India, obviously!). England need the top order to come to the party to have any chance and the lower order might be able to put the icing on the cake. But if the wickets are similar to the last tour, 400 won't be enough. They need 500+. If the mistake is made in making raging turners, then maybe the lower order comes into it more.

I think Carlo's team is what we will see. Although I suspect they will play Moeen over Bess.

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Post by guildfordbat Wed 03 Feb 2021, 8:03 pm

Hi Carlos and all - to date, I don't think Pope has batted at 3 for England or even Surrey. He'll probably be asked to give it a go there sometime - and, with his ability and temperament, I would expect him to succeed. However, with next to no serious cricket behind him since last August and coming off the back of serious injury, this week's Test wouldn't be the ideal place for a first time. So, I agree with Carlos, play him at 6, at least to start this series.

I'm also pretty much with Carlos on the expected team. Impossible to properly judge from this distance though. IF (big ''if'') Moeen is batting well in the nets, I would consider him at 3 in place of Lawrence. On form, Moeen's a good player of spin and unlikely to get bogged down. Going in first wicket down, that might make him a decent ying to the more pedestrian yang of Sibley or Burns. Picking Moeen would also give us another bowling option although it's really for his batting that he's in my mix. Bess and Leach weren't without faults in Sri Lanka by any means but they both have overs and wickets under their belts meriting their retention for now.

One other possible aspect I'll throw in for later in the series. I agree it's a choice between Anderson and Broad for Friday and I'm sure England's management would prefer it that way for the whole series. However, I wouldn't want to rule them out playing in tandem later on, particularly if we struggle with the ball and go behind. Fair to say, they were our two best bowlers against Sri Lanka.

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Post by king_carlos Wed 03 Feb 2021, 8:47 pm

Hi Guildford,

I'm in agreement that Anderson and Broad will probably play a Test together in this series. With India's seam attack being so strong now they will prepare pitches with plenty in it for them. Below is a good article from Matthew Henry detailing the India seamers rise over recent years.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/cricket/55812496

If the coaches and Root think the pitch is suitable I think they will play both. Potentially that's why Mo seems in favour as well. So that they could go with Anderson and Broad, still have one quick in Archer or Wood and use Moeen as the second spinner whilst batting in the top 7 - wherever that may happen to be.

I've long been unconvinced by Mo as a top order Test batsman. His game against the top quality seamers struggles both against the short ball and knowing where his off stump is. He does play spin well though as you say.

It's a familiar top order situation of several imperfect options, now exacerbated by Crawley getting injured. With Pope fit we should have a 4-7 of batsman who play spin very well though. So if the fragile top order can set a foundation we do have players to cash in.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Wed 03 Feb 2021, 9:11 pm

I should imagine if they’re thinking of playing Broad and Anderson together, they’d be targeting that third test of the series which is the pink ball day/night one...where you’d assume seam will definitely be a factor.
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Post by king_carlos Wed 03 Feb 2021, 9:38 pm

Good Golly I'm Olly wrote:I should imagine if they’re thinking of playing Broad and Anderson together, they’d be targeting that third test of the series which is the pink ball day/night one...where you’d assume seam will definitely be a factor.
Has the pink ball not swung prodigiously early on as well?

I think it was on TMS that the commentators were discussing the pink ball Test and how much England would want Anderson and Broad for the day-nighter in Australia for that reason.

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Post by JDizzle Wed 03 Feb 2021, 9:47 pm

As an interesting aside, we could see a lot of the third umpire in this series. India only have one umpire on the elite panel and Nitin Menon is 37 and has only umpired in three tests previously. The other will be a complete novice. Will be interesting to see how it goes!

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Post by Duty281 Thu 04 Feb 2021, 4:26 am

king_carlos wrote:
Good Golly I'm Olly wrote:Developing news...sounds like Zak Crawley might be out with a broken wrist. Reports from Ali Martin that he slipped over in the nets and just landed on it badly. Would be horrible luck for him, albeit maybe offer Dan Lawrence another opportunity?

Such a shame for Zak. I was looking forward to how he did against the India attack. Though he didn't show it in Sri Lanka he does have a game against spin as well as the quicks if he could settle into it at Test level.

1.Sibley
2.Burns
3.Lawrence
4.Root
5.Stokes
6.Pope
7.Buttler (wk)
8.Bess
9.Leach
10.Archer
11.Anderson/Broad

That would be my guess with Jimmy and Broad the toss up depending on pitch and overhead conditions.

Mo has batted in every position from 1-9 for England though so anything could happen if gambling on Mo as a batsman comes into discussion!

My main hope is that Pope bats at 6 if he plays. He's a middle order rather than top order bat for me at the moment, with Root and Stokes nailed on at 4 and 5 it makes the most sense to let our other most talented stroke player settle into a strong middle order rather than bump him into the top order at 3.

That should be the team after Crawley's unfortunate injury, and it now becomes even more vital that Stokes can bowl. If he can't then it'll be Woakes in for Lawrence and the entire order will have to be shuffled, with Stokes or Root going to 3.

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Post by Duty281 Thu 04 Feb 2021, 4:28 am

JDizzle wrote:As an interesting aside, we could see a lot of the third umpire in this series. India only have one umpire on the elite panel and Nitin Menon is 37 and has only umpired in three tests previously. The other will be a complete novice. Will be interesting to see how it goes!

Good spot. Is it really so difficult to get some neutral umpires in for a series?

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Post by alfie Thu 04 Feb 2021, 6:56 am

News I could have done without ! Not that Crawley was in any sort of form - judging by the Sri Lanka matches he might have been a sitting duck for the Indian spinners ; but taking him out of the mix cuts down the options (already a bit slim and even more so when Buttler heads home before the second game. He might have come good - now I guess we won't know.
And it increases the chances of them playing Root , etc out of position. Or Moeen I suppose. I actually think a lot of their batting problems over the last few years have come from moving batsmen around (injuries , "theories" , team balance issues) and they generally do better when the lineup is largely left alone for a few games as long as it appears to be working. No chance of that in the current Covid forced rotation era but it is a pity the already tough task of taking on India at their home is being further chipped away at.

Miss his close fielding to the spinners too ; although if Pope is OK he can fill that spot.

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Post by Duty281 Thu 04 Feb 2021, 7:22 am

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/cricket/55924989

Crawley confirmed as out for the first two tests. Sounds like a freak injury - slipped outside the changing rooms. Not quite as freakish as the Spanish goalkeeper - Canizares - who missed the 2002 World Cup after dropping a bottle of aftershave on his foot, but still pretty unusual!

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Post by alfie Thu 04 Feb 2021, 8:03 am

Have been some odd injuries. A cricketer - I think - injured himself cleaning his teeth once .

Points above re umpires are something I had noted earlier with some concern. Just unfortunate that experienced local umpires are not available at present but it might indeed give rise to a few problems...though we should not pre-judge , I guess : the new boys might be very much on the ball. Lord knows we all grumble enough about the "elite" ones when they have a bad day...

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Post by Duty281 Thu 04 Feb 2021, 3:01 pm

So what are we all thinking for the series then? I reckon a 3-1 India win. Not ruling out a drawn series, or even an England win, but it would require a tremendous performance from England's key players - Root, Stokes, Anderson/Broad - as well as needing some of the less heralded names to come to the fore too.

When England won in 2012, Alastair Cook led the way with three centuries, 562 runs in total, and an average of 80.  And Cook was backed up by a ton each from Pietersen, Bell and Trott. Root and Stokes certainly have the quality to replicate what Cook did, but is there going to be sufficient support from the likes of Pope/Lawrence/Burns/Sibley to ensure England make strong first-innings totals?

The spin bowling is the main worry, however. In 2012 Swann took 20 wickets @ 25, and he was commendably backed up by Panesar who took 17 wickets @ 27. I can't realistically see Leach or Bess (or Moeen) making anywhere near the same impact. But with the seamers England will certainly have the advantage with the enduring class of Anderson and Broad, as well as the firepower of Wood and Archer.

India look awesome and have the foundations of a world number one test side. A lovely blend of youth and experience. A batting order that is so well-balanced, with three explosive players and three that are more orthodox. A beautiful array of spinners that England will struggle with. Bumrah's pretty handy too. And they have home advantage.

In the end I think the series will be decided by the spin bowlers. India's batsmen, I think, will make pretty light work of Leach and Bess, but most of England's batsmen, conversely, will struggle against Ashwin and Yadav...and probably Washington.

On paper the case is pretty convincing for India. But England have been playing above themselves recently. Despite all England's flaws, they've won seven of their last ten test series, eight of their last eleven tests, and are on a five-test winning run away from home, so they must not be discounted. Though this will be the toughest hurdle in a trying year.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Thu 04 Feb 2021, 3:41 pm

India have lost one test match at home since that England series win in 2012...(to Australia in 16/17 when Steve O'Keefe randomly took a match 10 fer), and obviously haven't lost a home series since then (I think they've only drawn 2 tests, so pretty much won every test at home for a while!).

So I am pretty pessimistic...if England could somehow nab a test victory it would be a fantastic effort, even a 3-0 with a drawn test and maybe a close one or two would be a decent one too...but I do fear a 4-0. That Indian batting lineup is outrageously good, and while if England win a toss or two, they might be able to post a few big scores, Bumrah/Ashwin with more than able support from India's array of backups will be more than enough to mitigate the loss of Shami/Jadeja on the bowling front for India, and England don't have the Swann/Panesar level spinners needed to really compete here.

Maybe that is a touch defeatist, but I think it is just realistic/pragmatic...which is ultimately what I think the selectors have fallen on with them targeting this series for some rotation.

Would be good if some of the young bats could continue to show development, ahead of the big summer and Ashes later in the year especially...and with the rotation, it will be a good chance for the likes of a Foakes/Lawrence and maybe a few others by the fourth test to stake a claim to be included in squads/XIs going forward
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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Thu 04 Feb 2021, 4:00 pm

Duty281 wrote:https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2021/feb/02/channel-4-wins-rights-for-england-test-cricket-tour-of-india

Channel 4 win the rights for the entire tour. A huge win for them. I think it'll be a big ratings triumph, especially the five T20 matches and the day-night test, with the national situation the way it is and a sizeable Indian population residing in the UK.

It seems as though Channel 4's bid wasn't the best, but Sky didn't want to dip into their pockets for this one as they're keeping their powder dry for the upcoming tour of Australia, where the rights haven't been settled and there's a fierce contest between them and BT. With that in mind, I don't expect test cricket to be a continual fixture on Channel 4, though if it's a huge ratings winner...who knows?

Apparently Alastair Cook will be fronting the coverage. Won't be anything ground-breaking of course, with the Covid situation and the short-notice nature of this announcement. I expect the commentators will be the ones from the host broadcasters coverage.

Duty - further to your note about Sky and BT "keeping their powder dry" for the bidding for the Ashes rights in the winter...it is widely expected that Amazon are going to make a big play for the Ashes...Will MacPhearson saying on his recent podcast that they are favoured to win them and would be able to easily "gazump" Sky and BT for them, if they really want them. Should imagine the financers at the ECB/Cricket Australia are licking their lips at a prospect of a Amazon/Sky/BT bidding war for the rights...not such good news for those fans of free to air.
Boring stuff done now...honest Very Happy
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Post by Duty281 Thu 04 Feb 2021, 6:17 pm

Cricinfo, usually right, seem to think that Stokes won't be entrusted to bowl many overs and, consequently, believe that Woakes will be picked over Lawrence, meaning Root will be moved up to 3. Cricinfo also think that Moeen will be picked over Bess.

The wicket is expected to have a decent covering of grass and may favour the seamers more than you would ordinarily expect in India.

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Post by Soul Requiem Thu 04 Feb 2021, 6:22 pm

Balance of the team will be thrown out if Woakes is selected, has awful overseas anyway.

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Post by king_carlos Thu 04 Feb 2021, 6:44 pm

Soul Requiem wrote:Balance of the team will be thrown out if Woakes is selected, has awful overseas anyway.
I can't help but think if they are going down the Mo in the top 7 as second spinner and 3 seamers route then Archer, Broad and Anderson are the only 3 to justify it.

1.Sibley 2.Burns 3.Root (c) 4.Stokes 5.Pope 6.Buttler (wk) 7.Moeen 8.Woakes 9.Archer 10.Leach 11.Broad

That's the squad that Cricinfo have as 'possible'. They are usually on the money. When most a batting order shunts up a positions it's a sign of square pegs in round holes in my opinion.

If the pitch is green then I think England are right to try to use their seam attack but if they are sure enough to pick three seamers then Jimmy and Broad should both be playing. If they aren't sure enough to go with their best two bowlers then I'd question how suited the conditions truly are to Woakes.

Likewise if they are worried enough about Mo batting in the top 7 to feel obliged to have Woakes at 8 then I'd frankly prefer Lawrence play and they use Root/Lawrence to fill in overs of spin.

Unconvinced but if that side plays I would be delighted for them to prove me wrong. It certainly doesn't look like a side that will draw a game over 5 days.

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Post by JDizzle Thu 04 Feb 2021, 7:36 pm

I think the one thing that gives me some hope is India are without Jadeja. With England having 5 right handers in the top 7 (although the rumours about Moeen batting at 7 with Lawrence missing out throws a spanner in those works somewhat), the missing left armer in Jadeja is an even bigger gap. Especially when we have just seen how England played Embuldineya compared to Perera et al.

Ashwin averaged just over 30, albeit with 28 wickets, when England were in India in 2016 - compared to 26 for Jadeja. And England's gun players generally play him pretty well - below are some averages vs Ashwin.

Root - 251 runs, 3 dismissals @ 83.67
Bairstow - 143 for 2 @ 71.5
Stokes - 150 for 7 @ 21.43
Buttler - 92 for 1 @ 92

The right hand correlation is pretty strong. Stokes is the only one who has really struggled vs Ashwin, even if some of those innings are in England.

So if they can get on top of Ashwin, especially in the first innings of games, then it at least gives them a chance of posting some big scores. Obviously India's attack, as we saw in Australia, is more than Ashwin but Bumrah is coming of an injury in Australia so if England can somehow find some big first innings and are able to wear Bumrah down too then they might be able to keep is respectable.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Thu 04 Feb 2021, 7:44 pm

Duty281 wrote:Cricinfo, usually right, seem to think that Stokes won't be entrusted to bowl many overs and, consequently, believe that Woakes will be picked over Lawrence, meaning Root will be moved up to 3. Cricinfo also think that Moeen will be picked over Bess.

The wicket is expected to have a decent covering of grass and may favour the seamers more than you would ordinarily expect in India.

England’s already slim chances will be weakened if Stokes can’t bowl 5th bowler overs - albeit I have seen others report he has been bowling and fit and fine in the nets. Guess we’ll find out when we wake up tomorrow morning!
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Post by king_carlos Thu 04 Feb 2021, 8:21 pm

JDizzle wrote:I think the one thing that gives me some hope is India are without Jadeja. With England having 5 right handers in the top 7 (although the rumours about Moeen batting at 7 with Lawrence missing out throws a spanner in those works somewhat), the missing left armer in Jadeja is an even bigger gap. Especially when we have just seen how England played Embuldineya compared to Perera et al.

Ashwin averaged just over 30, albeit with 28 wickets, when England were in India in 2016 - compared to 26 for Jadeja. And England's gun players generally play him pretty well - below are some averages vs Ashwin.

Root - 251 runs, 3 dismissals @ 83.67
Bairstow - 143 for 2 @ 71.5
Stokes - 150 for 7 @ 21.43
Buttler - 92 for 1 @ 92

The right hand correlation is pretty strong. Stokes is the only one who has really struggled vs Ashwin, even if some of those innings are in England.

So if they can get on top of Ashwin, especially in the first innings of games, then it at least gives them a chance of posting some big scores. Obviously India's attack, as we saw in Australia, is more than Ashwin but Bumrah is coming of an injury in Australia so if England can somehow find some big first innings and are able to wear Bumrah down too then they might be able to keep is respectable.
Interesting stats as always JD.

Jadeja is a massive loss for India and such an underrated cricketer. Remarkably consistent with the ball at home, dangerous with the bat and brilliant in the field.

Kuldeep is a good bowler and left-arm wrist-spin is great fun to see as it's unusual but Kuldeep's economy in the Test and first-class cricket he has played is high. So England will get scoring chances against him if they stick in.

One thing in England's favour in my opinion is that the Indian players have largely been bubbling for an awful long time now and have little break to look forward to with four Tests, the one dayers, then T20 World Cup. I look at the England squad having rested Archer and Stokes in Sri Lanka, Bairstow and Wood for the beginning of this series, Buttler has one game to impress with a clear head knowing he has some time at home afterwards. Even having several players who won't play the white ball games so have a break between this series and the summer. I do think England could potentially be less frazzled over the course of the series.

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Post by KP_fan Thu 04 Feb 2021, 9:11 pm

king_carlos wrote:
Kuldeep is a good bowler and left-arm wrist-spin is great fun to see as it's unusual but Kuldeep's economy in the Test and first-class cricket he has played is high. So England will get scoring chances against him if they stick in.

.

I will use this thread to share my view on Indian spinners, the subject of discussion in the last few threads....

potency of Bowlers in tests is judged on not just economy but primarily on SR, secondarily on bowling average and thirdly on Economy
and Kuldeep has a a SR of 41 balls/ wicket.....admittedly over 6 tests only ....but fares quite well in FC cricket at 49 over 32 games against spin proficient domestic batsmen.

One line of thinking is Jadeja has kept the far more all condition potent Kuldeep out of the 11 because of his batting
and both of them have kept Bedi-sque Shahbaz Nadeem out
I don't think Jadeja will be missed with the ball......and I won't take Washington lightly either......he is Kumble-sque with his fastish pace and top-spinner...can be unplayable when the pitch crumbles.

Ashwin's stats  looks moderate only to Jadeja because Jadeja's fastish pace makes him 4X more potent in 4th inning when pitch has crumbled....while Ashwin picks more first inning wkts and remains equally potent all throughout

if someone does a breakdown on Jadeja's wkts they mayl find Jadeja's wickets skewed far more in domestic tests and even more in 3rd/4th innings of home tests.

As stated above......don't be surprised if Washington becomes unplayable in 4th inning...and also don't be surprised if India's pacers pick up nearly 40% of the wickets with their reverse
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Post by JDizzle Thu 04 Feb 2021, 9:45 pm

Jadeja at home/away - 157 @ 21.06, 63 @ 32.44
Ashwin at home/away - 254 @ 22.80, 123 @ 31.18

I dunno KPF - remarkably similar figures for Ashwin and Jadeja home and away.

Jadeja in 1st/2nd innings at home - 78 @ 24.82
Jadeja in 3rd/4th innings at home - 79 @ 17.35
Ashwin in 1st/2nd innings at home - 126 @ 25.35
Ashwin in 3rd/4th innings at home - 128 @ 20.28

Jadeja slightly more effective on crumbling pitches at home for the reasons you say. But I can’t agree Jadeja won’t be missed. England’s top 7 is right hand heavy. Turning the ball away from them is always preferable.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Thu 04 Feb 2021, 9:51 pm

Jadeja is an incredible cricketer in all three phases of the game (best fielder in the world?), there’s no doubt he’ll be missed (albeit India should still expect to win relatively comfortably of course). As JDizzle points out, after what the lesser Embuldeniya did to our right handers in the top order, they’ll be sleeping a tad easier knowing the premier left arm orthodox in the world isn’t waiting for them
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Post by king_carlos Thu 04 Feb 2021, 10:10 pm

Kuldeep's strike rate in all forms is indeed impressive. As said I consider him a very good bowler just not yet as rounded a player as Jadeja.

Sundar is a huge talent. Only 13 first-class matches to his name but impressive in his Test debut in that final Test win in Australia. I was so sucked in by that series that it will almost feel odd supporting the other side in this series. The final day is one of the first times in a while I've sat down and watched every single ball in a days play. I genuinely couldn't look away. Remarkable cricket.

On strike rates it's interesting to note that Moeen's Test SR (60.4) is very close indeed to Jadeja's (59.7). That is of course the only place their figures are close with Mo's economy and average a world away. Jadeja has bowled 553 maidens, an average of a maiden around every 4 overs. Mo on the other hand 265 maidens, pretty much one every 7 overs. Jadeja's control is excellent.

Whilst I've been critical of Mo at many points throughout his Test career he is however only 19 wickets away from 200 Test wickets. A milestone I definitely didn't expect him to gain sight of when he started in Test cricket.

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Post by Duty281 Fri 05 Feb 2021, 3:40 am

England win the toss and bat. Huzzah for Joe in his 100th test.

Lawrence in at 3, no Woakes. Bess retains his spot over Moeen. Anderson favoured over Broad. Think that's the best team England could have gone for.

India have picked slow left-armer Shahbaz Nadeem over Kuldeep Yadav. Nadeem's only played one test before and I didn't hear his name as a probable pre-game, so that's a surprising call.

England: 1 Dom Sibley, 2 Rory Burns, 3 Dan Lawrence, 4 Joe Root (capt), 5 Ben Stokes, 6 Ollie Pope, 7 Jos Buttler (wk), 8 Dom Bess, 9 Jofra Archer, 10 Jack Leach, 11 James Anderson

India 1 Rohit Sharma, 2 Shubman Gill, 3 Cheteshwar Pujara, 4 Virat Kohli (capt), 5 Ajinkya Rahane, 6 Rishabh Pant, 7 Washington Sundar, 8 R Ashwin, 9 Shahbaz Nadeem, 10 Ishant Sharma, 11 Jasprit Bumrah

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Post by alfie Fri 05 Feb 2021, 3:55 am

Sanity prevails in selection then...

Not perfect : Lawrence at three looks a big question mark , especially given the openers aren't Strauss and Cook. But all round as good as can be done with who is available , I think. Middle order batting looks fine and there is a good mix for the bowling.

Joe winning a toss for once is a plus. Signs his luck is changing ? Might need some more of that Smile

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Post by king_carlos Fri 05 Feb 2021, 3:56 am

KP fan will be happy with Shahbaz getting an opportunity I imagine after the Bedi comparison earlier. I look forward to seeing him bowl. He will be turning the ball away from the England right-handers which may well have come into that decision.

I'm happy with that side for England and even happier for them to win the toss and bat first.

It's not a perfect XI but it wasn't going to be and I much prefer Lawrence at 3 with Root/Stokes/Pope/Buttler in their 'usual' positions to Moeen in the top 7, everyone shunting up a spot, etc.

If England can weather the opening spells from Bumrah and Sharma then they should be well set for a good first innings total with the India selection of 3 spinners potentially not best suited to day one bowling.

Let battle commence!

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Post by king_carlos Fri 05 Feb 2021, 4:09 am

Offt Burns very nearly strangled down the leg side in Bumrah's first over.

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Post by msp83 Fri 05 Feb 2021, 4:22 am

Good toss to win for England and they are batting. With Lawrence in for Crawley. Anderson and Archer in charge of the seam bowling department with Stokes, and Leach and Bess the spinners.
Surprisingly for India, there is no Kuldeep, its Shabaz Nadeem ahead of him, and as expected, Ishant the 2nd seamer along with Bumrah.
Tough early chance dropped of Burns, else Bumrah would have a wicket of his first ball in test cricket at home.

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Post by alfie Fri 05 Feb 2021, 4:26 am

Was a tough chance anyway. But a little bit of luck is just what you want when resuming after time out of the game.

Early days. But pitch looks pretty placid. I like the way these two are running between wickets - busy , switched on. Which will probably cue a silly run out Smile

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Post by king_carlos Fri 05 Feb 2021, 4:36 am

A very solid start so far from Burns and Sibley.

Early signs are that this pitch is doing absolutely nothing. That said I think Ishant in particular has started pretty slowly, he is coming off an injury layoff.

If Guildford were foolish enough to also be awake at 4:35am then I'm sure he'd remind me never to judge a pitch until both sides have batted and bowled on it!

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Post by alfie Fri 05 Feb 2021, 4:37 am

And further on team selection...

Think the England lineup is extremely logical. Pretty sure they'll want to rotate Broad and Anderson throughout the series so makes sense for Jimmy to play this one , then Broad game two , and probably both in the third (pink ball) match. Retaining Bess for the present when he's been getting wickets rather than punting on Moeen ...will see from this match how well he can perform against better batsmen and then time to reconsider.
And as KC says it is far better to at least try Lawrence at three rather than shuffle several others out of position (an error they have made in the past which rarely ended well !)

India have gone spin heavy , despite rumours the pitch might give the seamers more than usual (which look unfounded judging by the first few overs anyway). The left arm spinner seems a sensible inclusion after seeing how well Embuldeniya bowled to England. Though I'm slightly surprised Kuldeep didn't also make the cut : they must want the extra batting that Washington supplies ?

Should see some spin soon , no ? Yes...here is Ashwin for over number eight...

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Post by Duty281 Fri 05 Feb 2021, 4:40 am

Quiet and watchful start, both openers leaving well and not a lot in it for the seamers. Just the one half-chance and one ball that squared Sibley up. Looks a normal Indian pitch, which means 400 is the bare minimum.

Now time for Ashwin.

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Post by king_carlos Fri 05 Feb 2021, 4:43 am

Ashwin's first over in just skidding on more than anything with the new ball. Sibley playing it well, only one over but using his crease a touch more it seems.

This feels like a wicket that England simply have to go big on in the first innings.

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Post by king_carlos Fri 05 Feb 2021, 4:57 am

That's some pretty old school (otherwise known as village) fielding from Shahbaz just there. It saves a run but he was lucky not to go straight over on his ankle.

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Post by alfie Fri 05 Feb 2021, 5:11 am

England will be happy to have edged the first hour. No fireworks ; but they've not been becalmed , and no alarms so far.

Does indeed look a pitch on which you need to make this first innings count. Will be interesting to see how Sibley handles the left arm stuff when it arrives...

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Post by msp83 Fri 05 Feb 2021, 5:14 am

Having survived the first hour without damage, England off to a decent start. Bumrah has bowled well, and the rest so far have backed him up alright, but India still in search of that first wicket. Seems like one of those tracks where wickets will be hard to come by though it doesn't seem like one where scoring is easy either.

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Post by Good Golly I'm Olly Fri 05 Feb 2021, 5:16 am

By the sounds of what comms are saying, India would’ve included Patel if he was fit to offer the left arm spin option, so the selection of Nadeem not a huge shock. Makes sense with 5 of England’s top 7 being right handers to have someone who spins the ball away from the bat
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Post by KP_fan Fri 05 Feb 2021, 5:17 am

Flat & Placid looking pitch so far....not an iota of movement for either seaamers or for ashwin.
The pitch is not as red colored as normally Chennai pitch is....it should turn at some point.

Ishant & Bumrah will surely get reverse after 30 overs...their line is good in stumps..they are being pcked for runs now...but might produce  LBW

great toss for Eng to win....and excellent opportunityf or them to make D1 count with the bat..

Moeen will be missed...but atleast they have batting depth
Hope Nadeem can make this opportunity count
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Post by alfie Fri 05 Feb 2021, 5:28 am

Mixed first over from Nadeem. One ball appeared to worry Sibley...but a few loose ones as well.

Do like the fact these openers are looking to score . Last thing they want is for the Indian spinners to bowl a string of maidens and have them fretting in their crease...

48/0 off 18. Decent start. Will be watching Nadeem as he settles into his spell.

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Post by king_carlos Fri 05 Feb 2021, 5:35 am

Fifty partnership up and a near ideal start for England albeit on a bit of a feather bed.

One ball from Nadeem's first over did grip so early signs the pitch will definitely turn as it crumbles.

51-0 after 21 overs. Very solid stuff.

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